Testing concertina and pamphlet book forms today. I wanted to see how the different forms work for these paintings that I’m making. The scrolls are still the most direct, but these have nice rhythm. I pasted card covers on a few concertina books. It changes them so much to cover them, even open like this, turns them into something altogether different.
Testing lots of combinations today – ending the day half way through…
I’ve been working on drawings and paintings today.
These are a group of eight small scrolls I made in watercolour and mixed media, based on my walks at Mynydd Llangyndeyrn:
Today some small experiments – making scroll forms from one of my prints.
By unrolling the taller one, you can read the writing: a paragraph from one of my letters to myself:
Yesterday you wrote about the strangeness, the unfamiliarity of the ordinary. This is a fundamental perception, that we don’t know reality until we go out of ourselves to meet it; we mustn’t assume or pretend knowledge. Reality is brutal, it has hard edges, and we want it tame or knowable, but this is a failure of courage. The roughness of rock, this is part of what the mountain is. These elemental conversations. The spin and orbit of the planet, the depth of time. The seen and the unseen, the ‘tidal conversation’ in us. There is no standing still.
Working on the cyanotypes today, trying things out and making tests, enjoying a bit of sun on the face.
I’ve been trying out different ways of layering some of my written pieces into the drawings. Some tests today – screen printing my writing onto small drawings and photo prints:
working on these gilded photos again…
Today trying out words and drawings together.
I’m quite hopeful about this, these are three test pieces that I made with some small drawings that were lying on the workbench – I’ve written them with moveable-type letterpress letters that I’ve borrowed.
You can see the metal moveable-type in the picture. You probably have seen these – they are little metal blocks with a reversed letter on one end which used to be used for printing books and magazines, by setting them out into blocks (trays) and then inking and passing through a printing press.
I printed from the blocks directly and by hand, by coating them first with oil-based relief printing ink. Just the smell of print-making ink makes it a good day for me.
Both today and yesterday, I stopped on my way home from work. Same hour, same place.
Yesterday, golden light slipping over everything, warm and soft. I sat and shared a rock with a thorn tree and just enjoyed the warmth, the moment, dazzlement of sun, greening shoots, redness of bracken, blackness of soil.
Today I hurried through, pushed by a cold unfriendly wind. The sky was overcast and all colours faded out, vegetation winter-burnt and retreating back, only blackbirds keeping low in the bushes were still believing in the spring.
Strange contrasts, but not surprising; the universe is stranger than we like to think it. Completely wild, and in no way tame, even in its local and quite ordinary manifestations like sky, wind, rock, grass, bird, person.